Riverside County says new COVID-19 vaccine website will help after online frustration with appointment setting

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Beverly Goad, 89, receives her COVID-19 vaccine at the Corona High School gymnasium in the Riverside County city of Corona, California on January 15, 2021, a day after California began offering the coronavirus vaccine to residents 65 and older. (FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Beverly Goad, 89, receives her COVID-19 vaccine at the Corona High School gymnasium in the Riverside County city of Corona, California on January 15, 2021, a day after California began offering the coronavirus vaccine to residents 65 and older. (FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

Many residents hoping to secure one of the highly sought after COVID-19 vaccine appointments were extremely frustrated Thursday when they were unable to gain access to the Riverside County website.

But officials hope that won’t happen again on Saturday when thousands of new appointment slots are expected to open.

The county’s new COVID-19 vaccine website is expected to provide residents with a more efficient appointment making system. On Thursday a technical issue in a website code left many residents disappointed when 3,900 appointments opened at noon, but residents who tried to register online instead received a timeout screen.

“Residents are understandably frustrated that the appointment website did not perform today,” Juan C. Perez, the county’s interim executive officer, said in a statement. “While we worked with our vendor to ensure it would be operational today, unfortunately, it was not. Frankly, that’s unacceptable. We apologize for this unfortunate situation and will soon direct residents to a new website.” 

When more appointments are open the new county site will continue to link to the state’s vaccine registration portal, but if all the appointments are already booked after residents finish the state’s registration process they will not be able to secure a time. 

On Saturday more appointments are scheduled to open at noon for next week’s vaccine clinics in Corona, Menifee, Beaumont and Indio. Officials said approximately 10,000 appointments will be available for anyone within Phase 1A and Phase 1B, which includes those 65 and older.

The following locations will have vaccine clinics starting Monday, Jan. 25 through Friday, Jan. 29 with appointments between 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

On Mondays and Fridays, the following locations will be open for seniors only. 

  • Corona High School – 1150 W. 10th St., Corona
  • Heritage High School – 26001 Briggs Rd., Menifee
  • San Gorgonio Middle School – 1591 Cherry Ave., Beaumont
  • Indio Fairgrounds (Fullenwider Auditorium) – 46350 Arabia St., Indio

On Tuesdays through Thursdays, the following clinics will be open for everyone in Phase 1A and Phase 1B, as well as those 65 and over.

  • Corona High School – 1150 W. 10th St., Corona
  • Heritage High School – 26001 Briggs Rd., Menifee
  • San Gorgonio Middle School – 1591 Cherry Ave., Beaumont
  • Indio Fairgrounds (Fullenwider Auditorium) – 46350 Arabia St., Indio

The clinics will provide vaccines free of charge, however those who show up must register prior to arrival, have an appointment and show proof of eligibility. Medical insurance information will be requested, although not required.

For more COVID-19 vaccine information and to schedule an appointment, rivcoph.org/COVID-19-Vaccine.

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